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Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. PEG, also known as PSEG, has recently completed the sale of its PSEG Solar Source LLC portfolio to Quattro Solar LLC, an affiliate of LS Power. The strategic sale includes the 467 megawatt-dc (MWdc) portfolio of 25 solar facilities located across 14 states, along with related assets and liabilities.
How Will the Divestiture Benefit PSEG?
The sale of PSEG’s Solar Source portfolio is part of its Strategic Alternatives process to explore options for PSEG Power's non-nuclear generating fleet, which includes more than 6,750 MW of fossil generation located in New Jersey, Connecticut, New York and Maryland, in addition to the Solar Source portfolio.
As PSEG aims to accelerate its transformation into a primarily regulated electric and gas utility, the divestiture of its non-nuclear assets and non-core generation portfolio will reduce its overall business risk and earnings volatility. Moreover, it will improve PSEG's credit profile and enhance the existing environmental, social and governance (ESG) position, driven by pending clean energy investments, methane reduction and zero-carbon generation.
PSEG’s Renewable Prospects
As the entire United States is transitioning to a clean energy economy, New Jersey is also working to address and mitigate the impacts of climate change by reducing carbon emissions in the electric sector. Per the state's Clean Energy Act (CEA), 35% of the state’s electric power is expected to originate from renewable sources by 2025 and 50% by 2030.
It is imperative to mention here that PSEG distributes electric energy and natural gas to customers across New Jersey, where approximately 70% of the state’s population resides. Notably, the company is currently pursuing two solar initiatives — the Solar Loan program and the Solar 4 All program — to support New Jersey’s Energy Master Plan and the state’s renewable energy goals.
The company is also seeking growth opportunities in regional offshore wind projects. Notably, in April 2021, PSEG decided to invest in Orsted's Ocean Wind project by acquiring a 25% equity interest in the project.
In terms of increasing investments in clean energy, PSEG launched its Clean Energy Future program in 2019 that includes approximately $3.5 billion of investments. Such initiatives will certainly boost the company’s growth prospects in the renewable space and enable it to duly achieve its net zero-carbon emission target by 2050.
Realizing the need and advantage of the rapid shift toward clean energy, utilities across the board have pledged for reducing fossil fuel dependence at a faster pace.
Following such a strategy, utilities such as Duke Energy DUK aim to achieve significant carbon neutrality and reduce existing carbon emissions by at least 50% by 2030 and achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. Another utility company, Xcel Energy XEL, aims to achieve an 80% carbon reduction by 2030 and 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050. Likewise, American Electric Power AEP aims at reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 80% by 2050.
Price Performance & Zacks Rank
Shares of PSEG have gained 19.2% in a year compared with the industry’s growth of 9.8%.
Image Source: Zacks Investment Research
PSEG currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
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